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About Us

Mission Statement

Checkerboard Film Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit institution established in 1979 to document, through the medium of film and video, artists who are making unique and important contributions to the American arts.

Checkerboard's creative profiles fulfill educational and archival purposes for students, museums, libraries, universities, art historians and collectors, in the U.S. and abroad. They represent a visual time capsule of artistic achievements spanning the last half-Century.


Edgar Howard founded Checkerboard in 1979 to document the artistic process of those engaged in the visual arts. We believe that a greater understanding of an artist's work leads to a broadened appreciation for the work. This conclusion evolved from Howard's first film on artist Brice Marden, completed in 1977, and his second on photographer Duane Michals in 1978.

Checkerboard's initial production, The Climate of New York, coupled the poetry of Edwin Denby with the photographs of Rudy Burckhardt. It was selected, along with Duane Michals: 1939-1997, for screenings at The New York Film Festival.

Subsequently, Checkerboard received a grant from The National Endowment for the Arts to create three films on photographers Harry Callahan, Aaron Siskind and Barbara Morgan. We were underway!

Since 1979, Checkerboard has produced over 60 films on the American arts. We are extremely grateful to the many supporters who have made this possible. Our films are acquired by an ever-expanding list of educational institutions and media outlets in the U.S. and abroad.

Our next major challenge is to archive and preserve an estimated 450 hours of interviews with artists, architects, photographers, writers, dancers, art historians, and others. Ultimately, we wish to make this material available for research purposes.

Edgar Howard, President

Susan Wald, Producer

Tom Piper, Production

David Leitner, Photography

Samantha Camacho, Production Associate

Gloria Sack, Accounting

Edgar Howard, President

Arvid Nelson, Treasurer

Leora Armstrong

Frances Beatty Adler

Elizabeth Belfer

Elisabeth Clark

Charles Howard

Leigh Seippel

Susan Wald

Thomas E. Zacharias

Tina Barney

Vivien Bittencourt

Frick Byers

Robert Cutler

Lisa Ehrenkranz

Bobbie Foshay

Hugh Freund

Linda Fritzinger

Sandy Gotham Meehan

Christopher Howard

Philip Isles

Vincent Katz

Wendy Keys

Peter Kraus

Peter MacGill

Alice Shure

Nicholas Stern

Richard B. Woodward

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